The Gardner Fellowship requires an independent research project with a faculty mentor in the spring semester. The fellowship year ends in an annual Policy Conference during the reading days in May. We have breakfast and lunch together and the Fellows generate poster presentations to summarize their research for fellows, alumni, faculty mentors, family, and other friends of the Gardner program.

“Future-Proofing Our Cities” Assessing Current Methods to Equitably Promote Sustainability in Urban America

Fellow: Shaunak Kale, Finance, Political Science
Advisor: Kevon Rhiney
Sustainability is a concept that is thrown around often in the modern era without much specificity on what can be done to truly achieve this goal. This is especially the case in developed nations like the United States, who in many ways disproportionately contribute to the overall problem of climate change on a global level. In an increasingly urbanized world, urban population centers present complicated relationships between human beings and the environment that affect millions of people on a... Read More

“To Bind Up the Nation’s Wounds”: Slavery, Founding Moments, and Racial Reckoning in the United States & Brazil

Fellow: Amanda Chen, Political Science
Advisor: Lisa L. Miller
In 2020, Black Lives Matter and other groups brought about another racial reckoning in the United States and across the world. Even a cursory glance at United States history reveals a cyclical nature to racial confrontation, with progress always met with backlash. Why does racial progress follow this cyclic pattern in the United States? Drawing on a comparative case study between the United States and Brazil, this paper uses an historical institutionalist framework to analyze the distinctive... Read More

Access to Reproductive Justice through the Indian Health Service:  Contraceptives and Colonialism

Fellow: Kathryn Lee, Political Science, Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
Advisor: Cynthia Daniels
The Indian Health Service (IHS)–a federal agency obligated by treaty to provide healthcare to Indigenous people in the US–has a history of colonialist practices and reproductive abuse that is continued by its promotion of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs), denying Indigenous patients fully informed consent and, as a result, access to reproductive justice. I analyzed the IHS “2021 Formulary Brief: LARC” and IHS “2016 Formulary Brief: Contraception” and compared the directives given... Read More

An Examination of the Impacts of Police Presence in Rural K-12 Schools on Racial and Ethnic Minorities

Fellow: Kavyasree Chigurupati, Political Science, Public Policy
Advisor: Ben Justice
This paper aims to research the role that the factors of race and socioeconomic status play in the interactions that rural K-12 students have with school resource officers within the education system. This paper will cover an overview of the history of urban and rural school resource officers and school-based crime policies in America. It will examine the differences between police work and training in urban and rural communities. Then, it will assess the impacts of school resource officers... Read More

Assessing the Effects of Insurance from the ACA on Primary Health Outcomes in the United States

Fellow: Ayaan Memon, Cellular Biology, Neuroscience
Advisor: Hillary Samples
The Affordable Care Act has reportedly helped to bring increased rates of insurance to low-income populations and provide more affordable insurance options to those struggling to afford it. Primarily, this is achieved through funding state programs to support the health of low-income communities, expanding pre-existing Medicaid eligibility to give more direct federal aid to low-income families, and through availing those ineligible for Medicaid with discounted rates for private health... Read More

Ayodhya Temple Construction and Religious Relations in India: A Computational Perspective

Fellow: Archi Parekh, Computer Science
Advisor: Thomas Davidson
Conversations on social media can cover a variety of sensitive topics, including religious relations. Nowadays, discourse on social media gives an intimate view of what everyone from politicians to ordinary people think about the state of religious relations in diverse democracies like India. The algorithms behind social media platforms also pave a path for conversations to turn dangerous and hateful. The Supreme Court ruling and the groundbreaking ceremony for the Ayodhya temple sparked... Read More

Bots, Borders, and Beyond: An Analysis of Automated Decision-Making Technologies in Migration Policy and Border Management

Fellow: Nidhi Salian, Cognitive Science, Economics
Advisor: Ellen Goodman
In the past few decades, there has been an embrace of “smart borders” within immigration systems where the development of Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning, and other related technologies for use in shaping migration policy and border management can be seen as a socio-technological problem at the intersection of state power, technological affordances, and human rights. Focusing specifically on Automated Decision-Making (ADM) systems in the United States and the European Union,... Read More

Communalism and the Census: The Role of Demographic Changes in the 1948 Hyderabad Riots

Fellow: Sreeja Pavuluri, History, Political Science
Advisor: Julia Stevens
In September 1948, the newly independent republic of India annexed the princely state of Hyderabad, through the “police action” dubbed Operation Polo, which resulted in massive violence on communal lines. A government investigation – the Sunderlal Committee Report – estimated a death toll between thirty to forty thousand, while others claim even higher numbers. Through both a statistical analysis of the 1931, 1941, and 1951 censuses of the Hyderabad state, and a qualitative analysis of the... Read More

Compensatory Internet use in Minorities and Socially Distant Group

Fellow: Duncan Wood, Cognitive Science, Economics
Advisor: Advisor: Steven Stich, Philosophy
I analyze the effect of being different from the average person on internet usage in the US, predicting that individuals who feel more different will use the internet more. Specifically, I examine the role of minority membership and the social distance between minority and majority groups. Overall, I find mixed results for a variety of minority types that generally affirm my hypothesis when controlling for many confounding factors such as education, neighborhood density, and income. These results... Read More

Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover: Understanding Contested Literature in Texas School Districts

Fellow: Charis Shin, English, Management
Advisor: Richard Miller
Recent years have seen an uptick in challenged books in public school curriculums and libraries, with school districts across the nation facing concerns from parents and legislators alike. The American Library Association has tracked attempted book bans in states from Utah to New Jersey, and notably, in October 2021, Texas State Representative Matt Krause recommended over eight hundred titles for review statewide because of their treatment of race, gender, sexuality, and more. Given that... Read More

Early Withdrawal from Extended Pandemic Unemployment Insurance and its Effect on Labor Market Outcomes

Fellow: Gabriel Garcia, Political Science, Economics
Advisor: Jennifer Hunt
Last summer, various concerns about labor shortages, reportedly due to extended pandemic unemployment insurance programs under the American Rescue Plan, caused Republican governors in 18 states to withdraw early in June from the unemployment insurance programs, which were set to expire in September. This paper aims to research the labor market outcomes of states that withdrew early and how they compare to the labor market outcomes of states that retained the programs until their expiration... Read More

Inequality and Other Factors Influencing County Level Covid-19 Deaths in America

Fellow: Niklas Bloom, Economics, Mathematics, Computer Science
Advisor: Anne Piehl
This paper seeks to find a relationship between county-level covid deaths and inequality. The unique dataset consisted of panel data with 24-month observations for several economic and demographic variables. This dataset was collapsed to perform a cross sectional fixed effects regression for the year 2020 and 2021. The regression analysis of the Covid-19 vaccine which was introduced at the beginning of 2021. By performing a cross-county analysis on 2,811 counties, this paper found a... Read More

Nationalization and Partisan Rhetoric in New Jersey Gubernatorial Debates

Fellow: Patrick Song, History, Political Science
Advisor: Katherine McCabe
This paper examines the role of nationalization and partisan rhetoric in New Jersey gubernatorial debates from 1981 to 2021. This paper looks at the contrasting elections analysis of New Jersey gubernatorial campaigns and the decades-long trend of nationalization in state politics and campaigns. I argue that state campaign rhetoric has become increasingly partisan as a result of nationalization. This paper conducts a hybrid qualitative and quantitative analysis of New Jersey gubernatorial... Read More

Nativism and Immigrant Criminalization in the News: An American Tradition

Fellow: Andreas Huey, Economics, Political Science
Advisor: Shantee Rosado
Given the recent increase in nativist sentiment and white supremacist violence, particularly during the rise of former President Donald Trump, this research sought to explore this trend by looking at the US during a period of similarly high migration. Specifically, this research sought to explore how non-white immigrants are discursively framed in U.S. news articles during periods of high migration. Further, we wanted to explore what impact these news discourses on immigrants had on members of... Read More

Poetic Politics/Political Poetry: Percy Bysshe Shelley’s Poetry and the Event of Radicalism

Fellow: Richard Suta, English
Advisor: Colin Jager
This project looks at Percy Bysshe Shelley's poetry against the backdrop of radical politics in a post-Napoleon, dawn-of-industrialization, Great Britain. Starting with an overview of Shelley’s immediate reception, the paper examines the impact of copyright and libel laws, while also looking at the culture of reviews and pirated editions of the poetry. All of these issues bring the politics of language into light. Tracing this role of language further, the paper then analyzes Shelley’s... Read More